Most of us will live longer than in any previous generation. We will need to change our current mind set about how to spend our extra years of life. How we decide to live as elders will become the most important challenge we will face in our lives.
To age proof your life:
- Plan to live a long life – 80 to 90 years; take steps now to guarantee the intellectual and social stimulation you’ll want in your later years
- Don’t get trapped in yesterday’s linear model of aging; adjust your psychological, social, and financial expectations to support a cyclic life plan
- Envision new career goals and challenges; intellectual flexibility and the ability to learn new skills and technologies will be key assets in a more longevous area
- Make disease prevention and self-care priority
- Ensure that your primary care physician is informed and skilled in wellness and disease prevention and has sufficient training in geriatric-related competencies
- Take responsibility for your own regime of self-care; give your body the loving care and maintenance it will need to go the distance
- Expect that you might require some form of at-home, long-term care in your old age, and find a long-term care insurance policy that will allow you and your family to be protected at a reasonable cost
- Create a living will in which your personal wishes regarding prolonged life-support are cleared out for physicians and family members
- Increase your personal savings rates
- Make pensions more portable and flexible to match your mobile lifestyle
- Pay down your high-interest debt as soon as possible
- Start saving at least 10 percent of your monthly income
Reference: Dycghtwald, K. (1999). AGE POWER: How the 21st Century will be Ruled by the New Old. New York: Putnam Publishing Inc.